Business North August 2022

70 | McLeod Cranes CONTRACTING Skilled operators handle diverse jobs Richard Loader A 3.2-tonne spider crane that is used inside buildings. On any given week, McLeod Group safely completes 900 jobs throughout the Waikato and Bay of Plenty, and while the company has an impressive range of plant and equipment, it is the talented team of operators that always make the difference. “Without those people nothing happens,” says Managing Director Scott McLeod. “They manage massively complex and different sites every day. They look after everyone on those sites and carry out big lifts. They do an awesome job.” With Head Office based in Tauranga, where it all began over 25 years ago when Scott’s father, Curly, founded the business, McLeod Cranes now has branches in Horotiu and Taupo, with satellite branches in Kawerau and Kinleith. The company also employs about 160 staff, mostly skilled operators or cadets training to be operators. “The range can vary quite a bit because as you go up in crane or hiab size the technical requirements and challenges also increase. The operators are incredibly clever individuals who every day safely complete jobs, where they are on the ground, actively rigging the load and placing the load safely. We do over one hundred jobs a day, and that’s what those guys achieve every day, through their training, unit standards, and through their experience. We have a very big focus on health and safety and training. They are practical minded guys who really understand what their machines are capable of lifting safely.” We have all watched in awe from the safety of an exclusion zone as the drivers of these massive machines reverse seemingly effortlessly up narrow driveways without causing damage, then carefully place their loads with pin-point precision. But perhaps what we don’t appreciate is the leadership they must exhibit when arriving at a busy worksite. “The operators turn up as one man onto a site of many men and have to take charge, influencing the site and making it safe,” says Scott. “From when they arrive the hard hats have to go on, the exclusion zones have to go into place, the drop zones have to be established and the lift-plans have to be executed. Our arrival can change a whole site instantly, because we bring with us a whole lot of hazards. We live and breathe health and safety and I guess that’s where we get brought into these different areas of work. We’re passionate about carrying out the safest operation that you can with a crane.” When you realise that Curly McLeod started his business with an idea for a business and a Kato NK250V 30-tonne truck crane which he parked across the road from his new home in Maungatapu, you appreciate just how far McLeod Cranes has travelled over 25 years. Still proudly family owned and operated, with Scott supported by his brother Peter and cousin Phil Hutchinson, at last count McLeod Cranes fleet included 31 cranes, 50 hiabs and a number of semi-truck and trailer units for transport. “Our cranes range from a very clever 3.2-tonne spider crane that’s used inside buildings, right up to a 350-tonne crane that has a huge lifting range and offers a diversity in its application. The technology inside these cranes is pretty impressive nowadays and to get the most out of it we spend a lot of time training the operators.” Operating throughout the Waikato and Bay of Plenty, along with providing crane project management services the depth and breadth of New Zealand, there are not very many industry sectors that don’t call upon the specialist services of McLeod Cranes. “In any one day it is incredible to have a look at where we are and what we are doing,” says Scott. “Last month we moved two drilling rigs, participated in two power station shuts, had hiabs across most of the Waikato and Bay of Plenty, with lift supervisors on two different wind farms. Today we’re lifting roofing iron in Taumaranui and lifting concrete panels in Hamilton. The range in any week can be quite spectacular.” 0800 80 66 66 | | 27 Aerodome Rd, Mt. Maunganui Hydraulink Tauranga - Proudly supporting McLeod Cranes Crane and machinery repairs and servicing We are pleased to be associated with the success of the McLeod Group of Companies. Proudtokeep McLeod’s rolling 07 5720166 10 Newton Street, Mt Maunganui